Who are the “ruling elite” mentioned in the Qur’an?

Who are the “ruling elite” mentioned in the Qur’an?

Each time messengers called their people to the religion of Allah, there has always been a section who opposed them, trying to impede their actions and causing difficulties for believers. The Qur’an tells us that these people were mainly among the ruling elite of that community. This is because of the fact that these people possess wealth, power and authority within their society. The reason for their furious opposition to the messengers of Allah is that they worry about losing this worldly power, and the influence and reputation they hold. It is stated in the Qur’an that there will be such people in every age:

And likewise in every city We set up its greatest wrongdoers to plot in it. They plot against themselves alone, but they are not aware of it. (Surat al-An’am, 123)

In fact these people, too, being people created by Allah in order to reveal the superiority of believers, completely yield to the fate decreed for them by Allah. As mentioned in the Qur’an, Allah has caused the evil purposes of the schemes these people hatched to backfire on them, and has taken what they possessed when they were still in the world and has bequeathed it to the believers. Allah describes the outcome of Pharaoh’s opposition and that of his leading people, who had great power and authority in Egypt but were succeeded by the Prophet Musa (peace be upon him) and the believers who followed him:

And We bequeathed to the people who had been oppressed the easternmost part of the land We had blessed, and its westernmost part as well. The most excellent Word of your Lord was fulfilled for the tribe of Israel on account of their steadfastness. And We utterly destroyed what Pharaoh and his people made and the buildings they constructed. (Surat al-A’raf, 137)
We expelled them [Pharaoh and his people] from gardens and springs, from treasures and a splendid situation. So it was! And We bequeathed them to the tribe of Israel. (Surat ash-Shu’ara, 57-59)

This word of Allah which is for all believers is related in another verse as follows:

We wrote down in the Psalms, after the Reminder came: “It is My servants who are righteous who will inherit the earth.” (Surat al-Anbiya, 105)

On the other hand, what these leading unbelievers shall meet in the Hereafter will be an inescapable and painful punishment unless they repent and change their manners.


Born in Ankara in 1956, Adnan Oktar writes his books under the pen name of Harun Yahya. He is a world-renowned man of ideas. Ever since his university years, he has dedicated his life to telling of the existence and oneness of Almighty Allah, to disseminating the moral values of the Qur’an, to the intellectual defeat of materialist and atheist ideologies, to propagating the real Ataturk way and to defending the permanence of the state and the unity of the nation. He has never wavered in the face of difficulties and despite oppression from materialist, Darwinist and separatist circles, still continues this intellectual struggle today exhibiting great patience and determination.

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